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Hotline Tip: Can A Client Sign For His Wife On A Loan Modification?

NNA Hotline Tips For NotariesI am a California Notary working for a major financial institution. Recently, a customer asked to sign for his wife on a loan modification document, using a power of attorney. Is this acceptable? – J.H., Burbank, CA

If someone appears before you and asks you to notarize his or her signature as the attorney in fact for another person, you may proceed. California law does not require you to verify that the signer is the other person’s attorney in fact because you are notarizing the attorney in fact’s signature as an individual.

On the notarial certificate, write the name of the attorney in fact exactly as you would for an individual signing on his or her own behalf. California Notaries are not allowed to certify a signer’s capacity, so you must not include that in the certificate. For example, if the certificate reads “personally appeared________,” write “Jane Doe" on the blank line, not “Jane Doe, attorney in fact for John Doe.”

Hotline answers are based on the laws in the state where the question originated and may not reflect the laws of other states. If in doubt, always refer to your own state statutes. — The Editors


Confronted with a tricky notarization? Unsure how to proceed? NNA members have unlimited access to our expertly trained NNA Hotline counselors to help you with all of your notarial questions. Call (888) 876-0827, Monday through Friday, 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. PST; Saturday, 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST

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14 May 2015

Hi, I have POA for my mother, can I sign her loan modification document for her

National Notary Association

15 May 2015

Hello. I'm sorry, but that's a legal question we aren't authorized to answer. You would need to contact a qualified attorney to confirm if a power of attorney gives you authority to sign for a particular type of transaction.

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